Kitchen Island Design And Lighting
Kitchen islands open up your kitchen's work space and entertaining potentials. Learn about kitchen island design, lighting and counter top , appliance and cabinet possibilities for your home.
Kitchen Island Design Keys
* Designing Extra Food Prep Kitchen Islands. You'll hardly believe it's the same kitichen once you've installed a smartly designed kitchen island.
No longer 'trapped' on narrow and cluttered counters, you can now experience what professional chefs get when you create enough work space on the left and right and front of your cutting board. At last, enough places to prepare food and whisk it directly into a sauce pan, or to line up all of your family's plates for easy serving.
* Adding Work Appliances To Your Kitchen Island. The age-old 'work triangle created by your sink-stove-refrigerator receives a boost of work place efficiency once you install a kitchen island. 'Push the design envelope' and consider adding electrical outlets so that you can use blenders, mixers, grinders. Consider also whether you might incorporate a small prep or bar sink, a warming oven or even a microwave into your design.
* Kitchen Island Lighting. Task lighting directly above and slightly in front of your kitchen island table makes all the difference in food preparation. No longer will you cut and prepare food while working in half-light or shadows. Your eyes will be relaxed... and you may actually save yourself from unwanted future knicks and cuts due to poor lighting. Save head room by creating kitchen island lighting from recessed ceiling-mount lighting fixtures. Make sure the on-off switch, plus dimmer control, is located at the primary entry point into your kitchen.
* Layout, Dimensions And Measuring. How do you cook? What sort of tools are 'normal' to your kitchen? How many cooks are in the kitchen at any one time? What are your favorite pots and pans... and how many are regularly used? All of these questions, and more, need to be considered as you determine the optimal kitchen island design that best suits your family. Your design rule of thumb is that overall sizing for your kitchen island should permit passage ways of around 42" in width. Don't be tempted to go narrow, as you'll create congestion, plus you could create a safety risk in the event of a fire or accident. If your think of 'averages' in terms of plate and pan sizes, you'll want a kitchen island design of minimum 4' X 3'.
* One Counter Top Surface Versus A 'Step Up' Counter. If space permits and your family enjoys a relaxed informal eating style, then consider a 2-surface kitichen island design. You'll get a very large work prep main counter top, plus a simple 8" to 10" high X 12" wide raised counter top creates an instantly popular kitchen island breakfast bar. You'll find that breakfasts, lunches, snacks and entertaining will quickly gravity towards your kitchen island and counter top area.
* Kitchen Island Cabinet, Drawers And Extended Counter Top Surfaces. If you ever study smart home cook's kitchens then you'll notice that they inevitably concentrate their primary cookware in the cabinet space directly below the island's counter top. Measure those pots and pans that truly get everyday use, and then look at your cabinet catologue or kitchen designer software and locate the kitchen island cabinet that best matches your gear. Another great kitchen island design tip is to locate a vegetable wire rack pull out into your island so that you have instant access to onions, garlic, potatoes and other long shelf life vegetables.
Drawers are very important to the overall utility of your work island. Think about having three drawers, so that you can reserve one for "knives and cutting gear only", followed by a second drawer for "other gear" and even a third drawer for "bakeware" or other food prep.
* Off The Shelf Versus Custom Kitchen Islands. For 90% of the households, off the shelf work islands offer a staggering amount of design choices in terms of size, hardware, shelves and drawers, cabinet finish from contemporary to antique, wood finishes in oak, pine, cherry, maple in a wide range of color tones, along with painted finish options. By sticking with the conventional market offerings, you'll save a huge amount of money both on cabinet and fittings plus installation. Moving into custom kitchen islands, however, opens up the playing field to whatever you can imagine... adding appliances, electrical outlets, broadening the overal scale, installing high fashion granite or manufactured stone counter tops and more. You might pay a premium... but you'll get a premium of enjoyment!